Thursday, March 21, 2024

A Step Too Far? --- Day 13/76

Walk: Union Square

Distance: 5 miles

So, what are The 39 Steps?

That's the central question of a popular,  highly rated 1915 spy novel by Johm Buchan. And later a British suspense film released in 1935 that helped establish Alfred Hitchcock as one of the leading directors in that genre, brought him international recognition and helped launch his Hollywood career.  It also established two of Hitchcock films' most defining characteristics: mistaken identity and combining taut suspense with humor.

Knowing this, Ciwt was excited to go to a local playhouse's version of The 39 Steps yesterday.  Turned out four actors played all 100 characters in the play, racing on and off the stage and reappearing in a new hat or moustache or dress.  And if there wasn't time to get off, they changed their look, accent, gait, whatever right on the stage.  

If, let's say, Buster Keaton, Charlie Chaplin, Lucille Ball and Carol Burnet had been the actors, this new farcical rendition of the play would surely have been brilliant and hilarious.  The play really requires consummate comedic, quick change actors at that level.  Otherwise, like yesterday, you have a production that is many, many steps short.  

No comments:

Post a Comment